Anthony Duquette, the multitalented artist, has taken his 150-acre ranch in the Malibu hills just above the Ventura County line and turned it into a magical kingdom. There are pergolas and cupolas, gazebos, even a Thai sailing vessel plus hidden trails, trellised walks and five houses set into the trees (all planted by Tony) and painted his particular shade of turquoise.
That fanciful setting is where Tony gave a birthday luncheon for his wife, Elizabeth, the artist who is called Beegle by all her chums, a Gemini like her husband. There have been earlier Gemini celebrations and there are bound to be many more for the Duquettes and their Gemini pals. But this one had its own special charm.
The pre-luncheon refreshments--Beegle's pate, margaritas, taquitos, crudites, Tony's favorite Red Eric Danish beer (the late Doris Stein introduced him to the beverage)--were served in a walkway covered by vines and flowers.
Lunch--a Mexican melange of chiles rellenos, enchiladas, rice and beans--was served on a nearby terrace. And by then the sun had emerged from the clouds.
Many of the guests arrived bearing gifts. Author Mary Anita Loos, who drove up with Jay Allen and Oscar-winning (for "Spartacus") costume designer Bill Thomas, brought a straw hat decorated with dried flowers for Beegle and nut corn for Tony. (The guests devoured it after they'd eaten the chocolate birthday cake.) Cynthia Lindsay brought a framed photo she'd taken in Switzerland of a pink-nosed cow decorated with spring posies. Hutton and Ruth Wilkinson were there helping host the afternoon affair while their Highland terrier, Jipper, a red bandanna around his neck, behaved like a perfect gentleman.
After lunch, Tony took people on tours up and down the hilly terrain and into the guest houses. Admiring the decor (the faux wood and marble walls) and Tony's store of treasures were actor Robert Patton, back from San Francisco where he did some Ralph Lauren commercials; banker Harry and Marjorie (Lord) Volk; Katy and Freeman Gates; Tony's brother Lucien Duquette; theatrical producer David Knapp (his mother, Gladys Knapp, is another Gemini); Anne Chamberlain; Anne Mudd, who is now in the fashion business with her daughter, and Alden and Sheila Pearce.
When Cuisine a Roulettes, the organization that last year served 186,000 meals to needy homebound and forgotten seniors in the Central Los Angeles area, stages a fund-raising event, it's done with plenty of pizazz. On June 15 it will be an Old West theme for a party at the home of Mr. and Mrs. John B. Kilroy, who recently annexed the former Atwater Kent estate to their own. Everyone's being asked to don Western duds for the root-toot-tooting cocktail hour, the "El Grande" chuck-wagon dinner, for the active dancing and the entertainment. While the lights twinkle below, there will be some exploring to do around the once-buried gardens and the ruins which the Kilroys have excavated on the Atwater Kent property, scene in Hollywood's golden years of some pretty exceptional parties. Roulettes, also known as SAM's C.A.R.S., was founded by Nelly Llanos and Kathy Kilroy to help Sister Alice Marie Quinn's St. Vincent Senior Citizen Nutrition Program. Sister Alice is known as Sister S.A.M., and therefore Roulettes is often referred to as Sam's C.A.R.S.
The Social Scramble: Last month at its annual dinner meeting at the Riding and Polo Club in Burbank, the Junior League of Los Angeles introduced its new officers. Among them were Sue Patrick, the new president who succeeds Lea Ann King; Carolyn Milner, president-elect; Barbara Wright, vice president; Barbara Bundy, treasurer; Joan Tisdall, secretary, and Jill Walker, director of the Community Council.
Eugenia Chandris, author of the well-researched book on how the feminine figure adds weight (Doubleday's "The Venus Syndrome"), has been moving around the country promoting her book and visiting with chums. In San Francisco, Mrs. Gordon Getty (flame-haired Ann) gave a party for Eugenia in her Pacific Heights home, and the guest of honor who is used to the best (she's from a Greek shipping family) was impressed with Ann's style of entertaining. Ann, having bought Grove Press recently with England's Lord Weidenfeld, is now a publisher, and she and her partner have commissioned Eugenia to write a book for them on a subject she knows well--the Greek shipping clans.
Lunching inside at Ma Maison--Roger Vadim, the director who discovered Brigitte Bardot, and Orson Welles.
Skitch Henderson surprised Rosemary Clooney with a birthday party at Jim McMullen's, the popular New York restaurant. And among the chums delighted to be in on the "Happy Birthdays" were Rosemary's son Miguel, Josh and Nedda Logan, the Edward Tishmans, Philip Morris executives Guy Smith and Harrison Poole and the band that backs Rosemary up on her singing engagements.